Ethics in the Daily Routine of Hospitals

How do doctors, nurses, patients and relatives cope with everyday life in a hospital?

Ethics in the Daily Routine of Hospitals


Clemens Sedmak’s book Mensch bleiben im Krankenhaus – zwischen Alltag und Ausnahmesituation (Staying Human in Hospitals – Caught Between the Daily Grind and Exceptional Circumstances; Styria Verlag) was published in 2013. In this publication, Sedmak develops ethical guidelines for hospitals. Now, in a second stage of the project, our researchers aim to apply these guidelines to a practical setting.

In cooperation with the Salzburger Landeskliniken (Salzburg State hospitals), the researchers involved in the project focus on the particular challenges faced by employees and patients at the university clinic for mouth and maxillofacial surgery in Salzburg. The project’s running time is 18 months, its implementation is conducted by Stephanie Höss, Gunter Graf and Elisabeth Buchner.

In hospitals, people achieve extraordinary things. Patients are cured or are at least relieved from their sufferings. The progress of modern medicine continuously increases the range of possibilities available to doctors. Without doubt, this is a very positive development. Hospitals are, however, special places; and the work that is done there unavoidably results in ethical challenges and imperatives for nurses and doctors.

This project aims to closely examine the daily routine at the clinic for mouth and maxillofacial surgery. In cooperation with the hospital’s employees and patients, ethically relevant issues will be made explicit. In a second step, and again in close cooperation with the hospital’s employees, our researchers will present suggestions that allow for ethical improvements and assist in their implementation.